Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Otters, Lobsters, Free-Range Eggs and Hen of the Day!

Yesterday I was in Leverburgh, south of Scalpay, to pick up a gift I had commissioned from a Align Centrefriend - Abi Stubbings - who was one of our regular stallholders at the SassyGael Craft Fairs in 2008. She did a fabulous painting of an otter on reclaimed wood which I thought was an ideal gift for a friend who lives near the seashore opposite a small island where otters regularly parade around. When I saw it, I was completely entranced - it is just amazing. In fact, I nearly kept it for myself. Our little creel boat is called the "Sea Otter", so I guess it is just a matter of time till I order another copy for our porch.....

Although, of course, we already have some of Abi's previous work. Because my husband catches lobsters for a living Abi painted a lobster for us. Though I'm sure she would have even if he wasn't a lobster fisherman!



These paintings are really special and Abi specialises in things marine - crustacea, birds, etc. Her oystercatchers on table lampshades are well worth having. If you are interested in getting in touch with Abi, just contact me.


Now here's a picture which shows a degree of optimism for the future season! Five eggs, all laid on the same day - wow. Think the lighter evenings and mornings are having a good effect on the hens, so we will soon be back supplying the tastiest, freshest, most free-range eggs at the Outend, Isle of Scalpay.


Hen of the day today isn't really a hen - she's a guinea fowl. We have seven of them and they make great guard poultry. They lay small speckled brown eggs with very tough shells. Though they can fly extremely well they stay around and about the croft and don't wander far. The dog enjoys nothing better than rounding them up and keeping them together while she moves them up and down outside the house. They co-operate for a while but when they are fed up with the game they fly over the fence or go up on top of the turkey shed where they screech loudly. Our youngest guinea fowl was hatched by a miniature nankin bantam and though it is about five months old and twice the size of its foster-mum, still thinks its a chicken!

2 comments:

Calana Crafts said...

You're back on then, hope to see you soon......

shortlegs the sheep said...

hi! Love the otter - Abi is so clever. I treated myself to a leaving pressie of a tray with the lobster on the plate - absolutely delightful makes me very harrissick (a new medical condition). Pleased the hens are back on lay and the carloway yarn looks fab - well worth getting in the skip for!